Tennis Racket Vs. Tennis Racquet

Tennis Racket vs. Tennis Racquet

Many tennis players do not use the term “racquet” to refer to a tennis racket but rather use the term “racket” for a tennis racquet.

A tennis racket is a sports equipment item primarily used in tennis. At the same time, a racquet is commonly referred to as all types of rackets used in sports like tennis, badminton, squash, racquetball, etc.

Tennis rackets are typically long-handled and usually have an oval frame with strings stretched across the front. A tennis racket may be made of wood, metal, or any other material that can hold together for the repeated jarring movements required during play.

Which Is Correct Among Racket And Racquet?

As per various experts, the correct spelling for tennis racket is “racket.” The majority of the English-speaking world have considered this version as accurate. Whether it is England or America, the experts of both countries have accepted “racket” as the correct spelling to define this tennis gear.

Generally, the word racket is assigned for a paddle-like gear or equipment used commonly in net sports to hit the ball. When you consider the other option in hand, i.e., “Racquet,” it is nothing more but an alternative for this term.

Many studies have found that “Racquet” is a misspelled word in the French language that has been altered since its beginning in the early nineteenth century.

The term “tennis racket” is incorrect since the word “tennis” cannot be changed into a singular form. In grammar, the word “tennis” and other words like it are called indefinite or uncountable nouns because they do not have any plural form and cannot be counted.

Next time when you are going to use these terms together, consider this first.

Differences Between The Two Terms

First off, you need to know that “racket” is the correct term for a sporting equipment used in tennis.

On the other hand, there are different ways in which professionals describe this gear. Some people prefer “racquets,” while others call them “rackets.”

Next, consider racquets as a type of sports equipment. In this sentence, the word “racquet” is being used as a general term to define tennis rackets or sporting equipment that have long handles and other types of badminton rackets for hitting the shuttlecock, etc.

On the flip side, a racquet can also be referred to as a handheld tool or device that has a head connected to a long handle.

At this point, you need to be very clear about the fact that the term “racket” is always used as a one-word version and cannot be divided into two parts such as racket/bat, rack/set, etc.

At last, it must be noted here that both words, i.e., “racket” and “racquet,” are interchangeable when it comes to their use in phrases or sentences.

The choice between the two depends on your personal preference and comfort level since they sound exactly the same when spoken aloud.

So, if you want to find alternatives for sporting equipment such as bat, tennis rackets, etc., use the word “racquet.”

On the other hand, if you are looking for alternatives for “racket” in phrases or sentences, then just go with the term “bat.”

Racket is the more popular term. In fact, “tennis racquet” is just a variant of this word and very rare to find outside America.

All the original tennis rackets were called as “rackets” or simply “racket.”

In Britain, a racket had been defined as a cheating device that had been used by criminals in the early twentieth century.

During that time, racket was used for any criminal activity without the consent of the criminals.

In the US and Canada, racquet is the word used for tennis gear and other sports equipment items while “racket” is referred to as a metallic frame members that uses wire grip handles which are also known as “strings.”

Although both words mean almost similar thing, you can use either of them to describe a tennis gear item.

Pronunciation – Which One Is Correct?

In the United States and Canada, “racket” is pronounced as ra-ket while “racquet” is pronounced as rack-it. In the UK, both words are said exactly the same way with a short A as in “racket.”

In Australia, New Zealand and South Africa, you can use both terms as per your preference.

Yet some websites have preferred to indicate the correct meanings of these words by putting up a statement on their sites.

The USPTA site has come up with this statement – “The official rules call for racket; however, a racquet is a perfectly appropriate term for this piece of equipment.”

The above statement can be seen at the official site of its governing body – United States Professional Tennis Association.

Why Is “Racket” Preferred?

The answer to this question is very simple! During the early nineteenth century, the term was used as a noun for any device that had strings stretched across an oval frame with long handles.

This same frame is now called as a racket or racquet (with or without the e) in all sports including tennis.

“racket” is a shorter term than “racquet” for this type of equipment. This is one of the main reasons why people prefer using “racket.”

The matter that affects many people, however, is the difference in pronunciation between these two words.

Racket has a short A as in “Raket” while Racquet has an elongated first syllable and sounds like “Ra-quet.”

In the US and Canada, “racket” is preferred over “racquet” because the word was used in this way for many years before changing to a different form. In fact, it is often considered as a common term rather than an Americanism.

No matter how much the sports gear manufacturing companies try to promote racquet, this term will never be popular because it has an incorrect spelling of the French word for this item.

A racquet (ra-KET) is a terrible name for the equipment used to hit the tennis ball. Illogical, ugly, confusing—it sounds like something you buy at Walgreens or The Sharper Image.

The correct name is “racket,” from the original English meaning, a device with strings wrapped around an oval frame.

In fact, most sports have corresponding equipment that use the same words—the basketball-shaped ball is dribbled with a “basket” or hoop—so it’s logical to call this equipment item by the name used in every other sport.

Racket – The Correct Term?

You have to consider that all the original tennis rackets were called as “rackets” or simply “rackets.”

As you can see, when you type ‘tennis ra’ in Google, the autocompletion predicts what you out to type in next, based on the popularity and probability that is calculated from previous searches around the world.

The word ‘racket’ appears 6 times on that list, while ‘racquet’ has just one representation, even in the simplest form of the term ‘tennis racquet’.

As per various experts, the correct spelling for tennis racket is “racket.” The majority of the English-speaking world have considered this version as accurate. Whether it is England or America, the experts of both countries have accepted “racket” as the correct spelling to define this tennis gear.

Generally, the word racket is assigned for a paddle-like gear or equipment used commonly in net sports to hit the ball. When you consider the other option in hand, i.e., “Racquet,” it is nothing more but an alternative for this term. Many studies have found that “Racquet” is a misspelled word of the French language that has been altered since its beginning in the early nineteenth century.

Which One Do They Use In The US, UK and Australia?

When searching for a valid evidence for the usage of each term in each country, I used Google Trends to try and figure how popular each term is based on time and geographic location.

United States

In the US, ‘racket’ is approximately 100% more popular than ‘racquet’ in searches. The graph shoes pretty steady movements for both terms, with ‘racket’ being above 100% percent of the time.

The UK

The word or term ‘racket’ is substantially far more used than the latter ‘racquet’ in the UK. Again, in every timeframe ‘racket’ is placed above in the popularity or trend of usage. Unlike in the US, in the UK it is not even close, and the word ‘racket’ is used far more frequently and more likely to be used rather than the term ‘racquet’, it is around 400% more popular in comparison.

In Australia

Between all three countries discussed in this comparison, Australia is the closest in the usage trend when comparing ‘racket vs racquet’ in Google Trends. Moreover, it is the only one where the term ‘racquet’ actually dominates more than ‘racket’ in significant timeframes throughout the time, and on average, in Australia they use racquet slightly more frequently than the other alternative.

What Do Dictionaries Say?

Merriam Webster

In Merriam Webster’s definition of a tennis racket, firstly it refers to the definition of the object itself, then defining the plural usage spelling it ‘racquets’ (like in ‘tennis racquet(s)’.

This is the first example that shows that even in the dictionary, the more popular use if for the term ‘racket’ rather than the latter.

Cambridge Dictionary

Moving on to Cambridge Dictionary, the image speaks for itself. A ‘racquet’ is defined in the dictionary as ‘a racket’.

When you need to use a diagram or illustration of word, it usually shows the correct spelling in-front of your eyes. This is an image taken from one of the many sites that offer free educational resources for students learning English as their second or foreign language.

Dictionary.com

Again, racquets are defined in Dictionary.com in their normal sense of an object used to play a racket sport but in the definition they once more use the term ‘rackets’, and moreover, there is a seperate row that defines it solely as a ‘racket’. Another evidence for the usage of ‘racket’ once more.

Understanding The Common Use Of Racket And Racquet

Among all the tennis players and supporters, everyone is seen suffering from determining the ideal use of these words. Infect experts of tennis have struggled to find the right explanation for this. The proper use of these words is detailed here to clear these doubts.

  • Racket

Most sports associations and governing bodies don’t recognize the use of “tennis racket” as a correct collective term. The common rule is that the word racket is used for any tool or equipment designed for hitting, striking, or playing net sports like tennis.

Unfortunately, the term “tennis racket” is incorrect since the word “tennis” cannot be changed into a singular form.

In grammar, the word “tennis” and other words like it are called indefinite or uncountable nouns because they do not have any plural form and cannot be counted.

Examples Of Using Racket Word

  • John is buying a new racket for his brother.
  • The Rock Star series is the lightest racket in the market.
  • Marcus is a person who never leaves his racket alone.
  • Racquet

The only time the word (racquet) may be used as an adjective describing a stroke is when talking about one that is ‘racquet.’ The term “tennis racquet” is commonly used in the context of almost any net sport racket.

However, some sporting associations have ruled that racquet is a synonym for “tennis racket” and not the other way around. In January 1877, the racquet appeared in print for the first time in the English language, followed by another paper using it at that time.

This indicates that it has become a new word and is not an old term.

Examples Of Using Racquet Word

  • Roger Federer got his first racquet when he was only seven.
  • Justin and Merry racquet Club has a safe and sound environment for players.
  • You need special racquetball rackets if you want to play racquetball. 

How Are Rackets Defined Across Different Sports?

The term “tennis racket” is derived from the tennis racquet is a tapered frame, which resembles a narrow tape measure.

The term “tennis racket” or “racket” is sometimes used to refer to any long-handled sports equipment with strings stretched across the front. Many rackets are used for all games with a net, including badminton, squash, and racquetball.

Tennis rackets are typically designed for hitting rather than catching and generally have a larger head than squash rackets. Some of these games are detailed here.

  1. Tennis

The sport of tennis is played between two players (or two pairs) who hit a ball back and forth over a net that divides the court into two equal ends. A point is scored when a player fails to return the ball within the rules.

Tennis is an Olympic sport and very popular worldwide. The tennis rackets are round and have a solid frame structure to make hard and fast strikes.

  1. Badminton

Badminton is a racquet sport played by either two opposing players or two opposing pairs, who take positions on opposite halves of a rectangular court divided by a net.

Players use their racquets to hit a shuttlecock across the net, scoring only by the serving player. The badminton rackets are the lightest ones used in different sports. 

  1. Squash

Squash is a racquet sport played by two (singles) or four players (doubles) in a four-walled court with a small, hollow rubber ball. The rackets used in squash are somewhat different from those in tennis.

The squash rackets have different shapes and frame sizes altogether. Squash requires hard-hitting the ball and quick changing of grips for better results.

  1. Racquetball

Racquetball is another racquet sport played by two or four players on a doubles court. It is the fastest racquet sport, with the shuttlecock moving faster than 300 km/h (186 mph) when hit.

In simple terms, you can understand it like a handball game, but the only difference is that it involves rackets.

The dimension and the sizes of rackets may vary across different games, but the common names remain the same in every case.

The two terms racket and racquet are easily interchangeable because of the differences in how they are made. You can educate yourself about these two terms, their origin and decide the best place to use them for yourself.

Rackets And Racquets – The Conclusion

Rackets and racquets may seem to be used interchangeably but there is a difference between the two terms.

The term “racket” is always used as a one-word version and cannot be divided into two parts (i.e., racket/bat, rack/set).

On the other hand, racquet can also be referred to as a handheld tool or device that has a head connected to a long handle.

So, choose between these two according to your comfort. You can use “racquet” for sporting equipment and phrases or sentences whereas the word “racket” is used as a one-word version normally.

You can also go for one of the alternatives given above.

The choice between the two depends on your personal preference and comfort level since they sound exactly the same when spoken aloud.

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